Dogs make a big difference in our lives, and one of the greatest sadnesses of dog ownership is the fact that they just don’t last as long as people do. Even a good, long dog life seems too short for our beloved pets.
It goes the other way too, though. If a dog’s owner happens to pass on their watch, a canine’s loyalty and love show through in many different ways. Dogs have been known to grieve, and that is what many people see in a photo that was recently shared of Sully, George H.W. Bush’s service dog.
Jim McGrath, spokesperson for the Bush family, tweeted out the photo with the caption, “Mission complete.”
Sully is a Labrador retriever. Like many dogs these days, he has his own Instagram account that is updated regularly. In case you’re unfamiliar with the pup, here are a few facts that were posted to his Instagram earlier this year.
“1. I was born out on Long Island 2. My birthday is July 14, and yes, I’m about to turn two.”
“3. I’m named after @captsully, who landed his plane in the Hudson. A real hero. ✈️”
“4. I’ve been to the local beach a bunch to run with the other pups in town 5. Fetch is not a game, fetch is everything ???✨✨”
“6. My boss is pretty special, and it’s my honor to serve ???? 7. I have a bunch of fur buddies on Walker’s Point, we play a lot ??”
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I LOVE my walks. I’ve been trained to walk next to my boss— and he always holds my leash as we go out. . . (xpost: @wethedogsdc ) . . . . . . #WeTheDogsDC #July4th #walkies #walkies? #SullyHWBush #SullyBush #bush41 #instagood #goodboy #DogOfInstagram #TalesOfALab #InstaDog #InstaDogs #Dogs #AmericasVetDogs #GuidedogFoundation #labrador
“8. Did I mention I love tennis balls?!?!?!? 9. My trainer, Valarie, has taught me over 32 commands.”
Aside from having a doggone good time running around outside and going on adventures, Sully helped his master with tasks such as opening doors and getting help when needed.
While springer spaniels were the pup of choice when the Bushes were in the White House, labs are typically used for service positions like this because of their size, character and teachability.
Sully was trained by America’s VetDogs, according to NPR. He’s only been Bush’s service dog for a few months, as he arrived after the former first lady’s passing.
Since he’s still quite a young pup with a lot of pep left, he’s got more service adventures coming up. According to NBC, George W. Bush revealed the dog’s next destination.
“As much as our family is going to miss this dog, we’re comforted to know he’ll bring the same joy to his new home, Walter Reed (National Military Medical Center), that he brought to 41,” he said.
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